It was a mixed Australian Grand Prix for Oracle Red Bull Racing, with Sergio Pérez claiming his first podium of the season in second but with Max Verstappen retiring due to yet another reliability problem.
Pérez had a great race at the Albert Park Circuit, and did well to get past both Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team drivers at times during the race. The Mexican inherited second-place following his team-mates unfortunate retirement.
Verstappen was on track for an easy second-place finish, having not had the pace to keep up with winner Charles Leclerc but being easily clear of the rest of the field. That was until two-thirds race distance, when Verstappen having just set the fastest lap, pulled off the circuit having experienced yet another reliability issue. It means the Dutchman has retired from two out of the three races so far this season, due to reliability issues.
Red Bull Team Principal, Christian Horner, was obviously very pleased for Pérez but also discussed how vital it is that the team get on top of their frequent reliability issues.
“Checo drove an exceptional race today with some stunning overtakes to secure his first podium of the season and bag some solid Championship points. But it was very much a day of mixed emotions with Max not finishing. We think it was an external fuel leak and we need to understand exactly what has caused that failure, so it was a very frustrating race in that respect.
“But we are in this as a team and we will bounce back. We didn’t have the pace of Ferrari today, so congratulations to Charles. It’s a long season ahead and we have the basis of a quick and competitive car, but we need to get on top of these issues quickly and we will keep pushing.”